Monday, August 31, 2009

Yard Art and a Birthday Gift

Many years ago I found a picture of a beautiful gate made of gear cogs. I fell in love with that gate and asked Mr. Fix-it to make one for the garden. That picture hung on Mr. Fix-it's refrigerator in Indiana for more than three years and when he finally came home he set out to make that gate for me. As luck would have it the gate was finished in time for my birthday this year. What a present!

Mr. Fix-it designed this gate (which is too heavy to be a gate and is now yard art) and made it all
himself. It helps that he works on cars and has a welder. The parts were gathered from his parent's home in North Carolina and also from our garage here at Tiger Gardens. The frame is made from steel pipes and fittings. The letters and initials are made from gear drive chains. Not sure if that is the right word for them but they are chains Mr. Fix-it welded together. The T. R. stands for Tina Ramsey or for Tina and Roger. And the heart, well, the heart says it all....

in the garden....

Any new yard art around your garden?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

In The Garden

By Skeeter

While recently visiting my family in Tennessee, I was able to get out to our very own Master Gardeners neck of the woods. Tina wanted the Hibiscus that I talked about giving away with another post. The plant made the trip with me and to Tiger Gardens it went. Hope it gives you lots of blooms to enjoy. I loved the plant but not bringing it inside each winter as the cats were not happy with it being behind a closed door.

It is always fun going to Tiger Gardens even if for a quick run in and out as on this day. Tina's front walk is always so inviting.

I never know what to expect at Tiger Gardens as Tina always has something new for me to see. Such as the made over shower door she created with freebies from freecycle! She showed us this Mosaic Masterpiece a while back but seeing it in person was so much better. The colors are so vibrant and just glow when the sun is shining through. Tina, you outdid yourself on this one girl. You could sell them and get rich one day as they are that awesome!
My favorite flower blooming at Tiger Gardens this day had to be the beautiful Angel Trumpet's.
I was totally drawn to their glow and size!
Yet another Mosaic by Tina on the front porch. These are such works of art.
How pretty is this beauty? Ah, so so pretty....

I am so glad I took Tina the Turtles Plant as it now has a new home and I have more memories from being IN THE GARDEN...

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Real Roadside Beauty

By Skeeter

Last weekend I had a post titled, "Roadside Beauty." I was of course joking about the Kudzu we see along the roadside in the southeastern United States. Even though invasive, I do find it a work of art in places and even see the beauty from within. I can say this as there is not any Kudzu growing in my Georgia Garden. Now lets move onto some real roadside beauties that I spotted while in Tennessee. The pictures above was snapped just up the street from where my parents live. It is along Dunbar Cave Road and I could not help but stare at it as each time I passed this spot. All greenery but so well placed don't you think?
Leaving Dunbar Cave road and intersecting with Wilma Rudolph Blvd, I found another spot of beauty. Different groups of folks from throughout Clarksville maintain some of the mediums at the intersections. I find this a wonderful program to help beautify a city.
This spot was in front of a bank teller machine. I was by this spot often and enjoyed this roadside beauty as well.
And right in the middle of the road, which is normally filled with asphalt, I spotted this beautiful little planter!
Some of you may recognize this place as Tina has posted on it once before when she first started this blog. This beautiful spot can be seen in front of the Toyota Dealership on Wilma Rudolph Blvd soon after you cross the Red River Bridge.
The beauty along this roadside is bursting with colors of Red and White. Do you notice that is the business colors used in Advertising? Thought sure went into that color scheme. This picture was not taken at the same spot as the pic above even though they look similar. They have several areas along the front of the car lot with the same pattern.
I was using the trusty Zoom lens from across the street to capture these pictures. My mother and I were not sure if the white vine is Clematis or Mandevilla but what ever it is, it is beautiful for sure!
And look, Palm Trees in Clarksville, Tennessee! I have heard a rumor of the price of each of these trees and they ain't cheap folks! Luckily for the landscaper, they made it through their first winter without dying. I am not sure but I think they have someone hired just to maintain these gardens on a daily basis as I saw him each time I drove by this spot. Maybe he washes the cars when not watering the flowers with his trusty hose. He should be proud with REAL ROADSIDE BEAUTY, In the Garden...

Friday, August 28, 2009

Update on the Waterline Dig Ups and Gardens

You may remember when I initially posted about the waterline installation along my road? If not do look at the post found here because the before pictures of these two angles in front of my home are found there. The changes are quite amazing-even to me and I'm the gardener!

Both sides of the road were torn up and a four foot ditch was dug into the hill and along the road in order to install a new water pipe. You can see in the two pictures exactly where the water pipe is located because the asphalt on the driveway is a different color.

The first picture shows the left side of my driveway when looking at the house. I am most happy with this little garden. Growing in it are: 'Powis Castle' artemesia, several yuccas, prickly pears, a few lavenders, and brown eyes. I smoothed out the ditch after the workers left and stacked some rocks alongside the bank. I actually gained about a foot of real estate once the ditch was smoothed back over. This is a flat area where I could not resist putting in a little garden. In order to stabilize the small hill lining the ditch on this side of the driveway I planted the 'Powis Castle' cuttings all along the bank. I think they make a great border and they have loved the location more than I imagined. This garden is a low maintenance easy going simple kind of garden since it is alongside a busy highway. I do not tend it much at all.
The right side of the driveway fared much better than the left in the major renovation. Other than having to move the prickly pears and the Angelina sedum it suffered little damage since the workers cut into the hill half way down it instead of into the garden. The grass has quickly filled in along side the bank and the sedum and prickly pears are looking great too! I did plant a few more brown eyes on this side and seeded the bank a bit. The hay is a result of the workers trying to fix everyone's front yards once they finally finished their work. I have added some 'Powis Castle' cuttings on this side too. Once they fill out they'll shine and highlight the driveway in a nice way.

So, all's well that ends well....

in the garden....

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Camelia 'Apple' Seedpods

Ever seen camellia seedpods? They look like miniature apples and are quite lovely. They are easy to overlook so you must look for them closely. Seeds are not the best way to propagate camellias (my opinion layering is the best way) but when given the right conditions camellia seeds should germinate and grow. I hope I have the right conditions....

in the garden....

Happy Birthday to my niece 'Madame'! And to Dave's Daughter too! And anyone else who has a birthday today!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Sun and the Garden and Some Advice Please!

Summertime and the living is easy as they say. Summertime sun can be ruthless and it's not so easy to live with though. I need some help with the sun from you all. Most of you are experienced gardeners and know something about the sun and its orientation so I'd love to hear all your opinions. Here is my question:

What is the best directional layout for garden beds or rows of vegetables or ornamentals in order to maximize the sun all year round? North/South or East/West or something in between??

in the garden....

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Home Canning

Posted by: Dawn
It's that time of year again, the harvest of all the gardens.

My peas stopped producing around the first of August, though I didn't expect to do much with them but eat and be merry, we canned about 6 pints that we didn't feel like eating.

And this is the reason why, beans, beans, and more beans. kitchen sink is one big sink instead of two. It took me about a hour to snap both ends of each bean and then another 45 minutes to chop.

My canner is very, very old, it was given to me from a friend, we figured we had to change some of the contraptions that are built-in on the top. We also ran a test run the night before, my husband pressurized the canner to 20 lbs to see if the emergency valve and the back-up emergency would work. "What da ya mean?" "You were trying to blow them off!?" Everything worked out well though, I have replace a petcock with a regulator that will jiggle when too much pressure is applied, that pops pressure out every time it jiggles/jumps. Best thing I could of done. So here we go with the beans and of course we want salt, of course I ran my jars on the sanitizing cycle of the dishwasher and, of course I boiled the lids.
The nice thing about this regulator is a small tilt will let all the steam out, unpressurizing the canner. I had never canned before so this was incredibly neat to me, not to mention my veggies were ready to come out!
We were quite proud of the audible pop the peas made when the lids became sealed, they actually don't do this until they cool down. It was fun, but then again, after all the growing, prep and worry, something as little as a small pop would make you laugh.
Until the next time 'round, see ya In the Garden.

Monday, August 24, 2009



By Lola

Tuberose that is. My first encounter with this lovely plant was in N.C. I saw the plant in bloom and it smelled fantastic. The smell is like a gardenia. I purchased the plant and later brought it back to Florida and planted it in the ground. It died back that winter but came back the next spring and bloomed. Sadly it did not appear after the next winter.
Last year I purchased the bulbs of the double tuberose (Polianthes Tuberosa 'The Pearl'). I also purchased the single Mexican tuberose, (Rajanigandha, Sedap Malam) . Researching this one I learned the Aztecs used it's oil to flavor chocolate.

This is the picture of the single Mexican Tuberose As you can see it's got two flower stalks.
This is the picture of the double tuberose, The Pearl. They didn't bloom last year but have done so this year. They started forming flower stalks around the first of July. As time passed the stalks got longer. Then they started with the blooms.
This bloom is the result of the Mexican Tuberose being broken off.
See how the flower looks as we've brought it closer!!!

This is the double tuberose before it starts to open. A cluster of "pods" as I call them
A closeup of the "pods"
I have one sitting by the front door and one by the garage door so no matter which way we enter there is that lovely smell.

So as long as they bloom we will have a very pleasant smell.......

In the Garden

Sunday, August 23, 2009

In Nina's Garden

By Skeeter

I left my Georgia Garden for another week long visit with my family in Tennessee. This go round Tina and I were able to squeeze in a visit with Nina. Upon Meeting Nina on previous TN visits, I found out that Nina grew up in a house next to some of my mothers relatives! Amazing what a small world it is out there. My mother has been wanting to meet Nina ever since. It was my Mothers Birthday and I decided it would be a perfect day to take her on a Mother Daughter Day out in the country to visit with Nina and Tina.
Nina and her husband Gene, live on the most serene spot one can imagine! I could sure wake up to this view in my front yard every morning. So peaceful and relaxing.
As you drive up the driveway, you are greeted by this beautiful patch of color.
At first glance, I knew this would be my favorite garden within Nina's paradise.
So much color, full and lush just calling out to butterflies and bees to drop in.
Our eyes were captured by this Red and Gold beauty. Nina tells us this is one plant. Or is it two plants? Hum, this beauty is Helen's Flower or Helenium Autumnale, red-gold. You tell me, is it one plant or two plants? Quite impressive and all coming from the same root!
Nina has one of the Tipsy Pots that Lola inspired me to make this past summer. They are such a fun touch of whimsy in the Garden.
This Cypress Vine caught my eye with lots of activity from the Hummingbirds. Nina says this plant is very invasive but I must have one in my garden! I was enjoying all the Hummingbirds and it would go great close to the Saints Bald Cypress Tree! The camera focused on the foliage instead of the blooms but you can still see the star shape of the red blooms. Nina, I will be looking for those seeds as this is a must in my garden. :-)
Then I spotted my new favorite garden in Nina's yard. The gold fish pond! I have always wanted a pond but the Saint has not taken that bait as of yet. "Too much trouble to fight off the wildlife" and he is probably right. So for now I enjoy other ponds such as this one at Nina's house.
The goldfish are so happy swimming around and I was about ready to jump in the water with them as it had started to heat up by this time. Gotta love those Dog Days of Summer...
A blink of the eye and I had another favorite spot! Nina is not happy with this area of her yard. She says it needs work but I found it very inviting with being such a natural type spot to view.
Little touches such as the fallen pot spilling greenery make this a very interesting place in the garden. Nina, we are usually our own worse critic so don't fret about this spot. I found it wonderful.
The Cosmos were blooming to beat the band! Yet, another Southern Term out of my mouth.
See the tiny bee having a sip of nectar?
I then spotted this special planter in the garden. This lunch box belongs to Nina's father who carried this to work for many years. At this point of the Garden Tour, I stopped looking for a favorite spot. How could I chose just one with so much beauty surrounding me? Instead, a favorite memory of Nina's Gardens, found in the love and care with these little touches throughout.
What would normally be a blank wall on my house has become a cute work of art in Nina's Garden. I found this to be a great way to display a window and pan from the old house Nina once called home.
I forgot to ask if this wagon once belonged to Nina's children but for now, it holds plants and makes for another great focal point.
I don't have this plant but I think Tina and Nina called it Joe Pye Weed. It was in full bloom and the butterflies were having a feeding frenzy.
Here you see three of the flutterbugs busy at work.
My mom does not know too much about flowers but she enjoys viewing them. She says the flower bug skipped a generation with her. Her mother was an avid gardener and belonged to the Clarksville Garden Club. But one thing is for sure, my mom knows her Air Conditioners! She retired from Marketing at Trane Company and she was most impressed to see the newer model in Nina's Garden. Okay mom, that is not a flower so on with the Garden tour now....
I was in awe of the ivy growing up the tree trunk along with the ferns below. More little touches of whimsy with old candle holders used for color amongst the ferns.
I like the way Nina used old dishware to create a nice little statue to brighten up a spot. If only I had known of this while working 3 days at the Cats Are Us yard sale in June! They had lots of things for me to use to make one of these. Note to self: Keep Nina's dishware creations in the mind...
Ah, one of my favorite statues of all times. The little Savannah Girl made famous with the Book and Movie "Midnight In the Garden of Good and Evil" I did not care too much for the movie but the statue is adorable.
Hosta looking healthy and with so many woods around. I know there must be deer in those woods. How do you keep the deer away?
I was baffled by this bloom. Does anyone recognise it? I have seen Rose of Sharon before but never have I seen a Double Rose of Sharon.
The bushy tree looks like a Rose of Sharon for sure but the blooms are so not Rose of Sharon as I know them. I learn something new in every Garden I visit!
The silhouette of the bird was familiar to me. That is because Tina has posted on this spot before with a previous visit to Nina's Garden. This little bridge has been painted white since Tina's posting. It makes me want one ever so more now. Saint, are you listening here? Ah, Magnolia trees make a perfect front drop to the woodsy backdrop. I spotted signs of the Yellow Belly Sap Sucker (woodpeckers) on the trees. I hope they leave them alone as they can do massive damage.
A shady spot but still hot day as the humidity was starting to take its toll on us by now.
Beautiful planters on the walkway to the front door where air conditioning awaited us.
Nina was a great hostess and had us a wonderful lunch prepared. We sat and ate lunch (a simple Sandwich my foot) while gabbing up a storm. As usual, the time flew by and it was time for us to head on down the road. Thank you Nina for a wonderful time and we must get back out your way again some time when the weather is cooler for a longer visit outside in the garden.
And Thanks to Gene for letting us ladies take over the house for a few hours. We don't bite and with the next visit, I expect you to join in on the fun. We do talk about more then just flowers you know. Gene gets credit for the beautiful trim job of this evergreen! Gene, I have a hedge you can clip if you ever get to our neck of the woods...

We said our goodbyes and Tina took off to greet the Jimster from school. Nina gave us some backroad directions to the old homeplace so we took off in that direction.

A beautiful curvy drive through the woods and we were at the old Church where my grandmother and her family gathered for events and worship.

Mom and I spent a little time walking around visiting with the family members buried on the chuch grounds. I learned more family history and here you see my mothers Grandparents stone.

We drove up to the old homeplace spot and also past the creek that I would wade in as a child.

It is nice to slow down the fast pace of life and go down memory lane at times. We must never forget where we came from and to occasionally go back, stop and smell the wildflowers growing along the creek or roadside.

We sure enjoyed our stroll IN NINA'S GARDEN...